Keeping fit and healthy from head to toe – Brain function, eyes and head

Keeping fit and healthy from head to toe – Brain function, eyes and head

Today’s highlighted body region contains the eyes, brain, and head. Pay extra attention to this region, exercise it, and look after it! Below you find some tips and recipes. You can do these also on other days, but use this symbol as a reminder, and after all today is the best day to do it.

Meditate and ‘pull the switch’ in your happy place

Find some time during the day to shut your eyes for a few minutes. I suggest you find a particular relaxing piece of music that is roughly 5-7 minutes long (it could also be 2-3 songs). Sit or lie in a comfortable position with your eyes closed. Remove yourself from the world around you. ‘Pull the ‘off switch’ on the world around you and try to avoid any intrusive thoughts about work problems or other events. Just be in the moment. Now introduce a picture of your happy place, your choice of music can be coordinated with your visualization. It could be lying on a beach with the waves gently lapping to the shore, a hut in a jungle, or an Alpine field full of flowers and crips sunshine. It does not matter, except it should be a place full of nature, clean air with a soothing atmosphere. Take a deep breath in, expand your belly and hold as long as you can, and then exhale, drawing your belly in, getting rid of all the air together with stress and problems. Carry on gently until the music is finished.

Keep always to the same music and place, so your unconscious mind gets triggered to relax. Try to do this once a day or whenever there is a need. With busy lives, we often forget to ‘pull the switch and relax’. This symbol will trigger should act as a reminder to take a few minutes out of our busy schedule and to escape to our ‘happy place’.

A good night’s sleep

and its effect should not be underestimated. We all have our unique circadian rhythms and sleeping patterns.  Here is an article that explains how our circadian rhythm works

If you have frequent trouble going to sleep, here is an old folkloric tradition to use small cushions either filled with lavender or hop cones and flowers (hop cushions).

Both lavender and hop cushions are known for their potential calming and sleep-inducing properties. Let’s explore each one:

 

  1. Lavender:
    • Benefits:
      • Lavender is widely recognized for its soothing aroma, which may help reduce stress and anxiety.
      • It is believed to promote relaxation and calmness, potentially aiding in falling asleep.
      • Some studies suggest that lavender may have mild sedative effects.
    • How to use:
      • You can use lavender essential oil to infuse the cushion with its scent.
      • Lavender sachets or dried lavender flowers can also be placed inside the cushion. Use dried lavender from your garden if you grow it.
  2. Hops:
    • Benefits:
      • Hops are commonly associated with the brewing of beer, but they also have calming properties.
      • The hop plant contains compounds that may have mild sedative effects and promote sleep.
    • How to use:
      • Similar to lavender, you can use hop essential oil or dried hop flowers to fill the cushion.
      • Hops are sometimes used in combination with other herbs to enhance their sleep-promoting effects.

Choosing Between Lavender and Hops:

  • Personal Preference: Some people find the scent of lavender more appealing and soothing, while others may prefer the earthy aroma of hops.
  • Combination: You can also consider using a combination of both lavender and hops for a unique blend of scents.

Additional Tips for Better Sleep:

  • Ensure your sleep environment is cool, dark, and quiet.
  • Establish a consistent bedtime routine.
  • Limit screen time before bed to promote melatonin production.
  • Avoid caffeine and heavy meals close to bedtime.

Ultimately, the effectiveness of lavender or hop cushions may vary from person to person. It’s a good idea to try each one separately or in combination and see which works best for you. Creating a relaxing bedtime routine and maintaining a healthy sleep environment are also crucial factors in improving sleep quality.

Train your brain

When you commute or wait for a doctor’s appointment or have some time to spare, instead of googling on your phone, find an app/quiz and train your mind. Start this when you are young and keep it up to old age. It is a short and fun way to keep your mind active. Another way is to learn something ‘by heart’ such as a poem or lyrics to a song. Then recall on numerous occasions. Once it gets too easy, move on to the next text.

Test your eyes

Today is a good reminder to book yourself in for an eye test, update glasses, or contact prescriptions. It is also a good day for an eye test or choosing new glasses/contact lenses.
To soothe tired eyes: Take a few common poppy leaves and boil them to a pulp, once warm, apply them to your eyelids. You can also buy poppy tea bags to make an infusion. Wet 2 cotton buds place them on your eyes and drink the rest as poppy tea calms and helps with insomnia (see section above).

Scalp Tonic to keep healthy hair

Every time you wash your hair, try to rub your scalp with nettle tea. This will help keep your scalp healthy and prevent hair loss. This is a very old recipe from my grandmother and it works. It can be combined with the right dates for haircutting or just applied after a wash.  Here is how to do it. 

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